6th February, 2014 would be marked as a very black day for the Indian justice delivery system. A shameless Director of CBI Ranjit Sinha did not hesitate to declare his political allegiance after he allowed Amit Shah and Modi to be dropped from the array of accused in the Ishrat Jahaan case. Ranjit Sinha said that “UPA would have been happy if Amit Shah was made an accused”. In the present days of political chaos, the top cops have started choosing their political masters. Ranjit Sinha has completed the process of saffronization.
Ranjit Sinha is not the first top cop to change his color. Very recently Satyapal Singh, the Ex-Chairman of the Special Investigation Team appointed for the preliminary investigation of Ishrat case and the Police Commissioner of Mumbai, resigned from his job and promptly joined BJP and shared the podium with Narendra Modi at the Meerut Rally. In fact right from the beginning, the police officers nominated by Central Government in the SIT and the Gujarat Police officers appointed by the state formed by the High Court were treacherous. A quick chronology of certain important events during the course of investigation will establish the effort made to sabotage the case.
- The Division bench of Gujarat High Court by its order dated August 12th, 2010, directed the formation of the SIT for preliminary investigation. SIT had one police officer from Central Govt., one from State Government and one officer to be nominated by the victims lawyers. I had named IGP Satish Verma to be our nominee; Karnail Singh, Police Commissioner of Delhi and of Batla house fame was appointed by Central Government and Mohan Jha, IGP was appointed by Gujarat Government.
- Within the first few weeks, differences developed in SIT as Mohan Jha tried to break an eye witness to the fake encounter. Satish Verma filed an affidavit placing the facts, but no action has been taken against Jha. Karnail Singh soft pedaled and resigned from SIT.
- After the resignation of Karnail Singh, Central Government sent the names of three more officers, one of whom was Mr Satyapal Singh who was appointed as the chairman of SIT on . Within a few days, Satyapal developed differences with Satish Verma and realized that as long as Verma was one of the members of the SIT, Satyapal could not help Amit and Modi. By 24th June, 2011, Satyapal found out a way to get out of SIT. The Division Bench observed the reasons in it order date 24.6.2011 (CR.MA/15981/2010).
However, we may record that Dr. Satyapal Singh, Chairman who is personally present has tendered letter dated 24.06.2011 through private advocate Mr. Mihir Thakor with M/s. Singhi & Co., and has expressed certain difficulties about the language and also for interrogation of one of the batch mate of him, viz., Mr.P.P. Pandey. He has also shown reservation about difference of opinion between other two members of SIT and therefore, he has prayed that he may be relieved as Chairman of SIT.
- Ultimately, due to the most sincere and objective investigation carried out by Satish Verma, the SIT submitted the report that the encounter of Ishrat, Javed and two others on 15th June, 2004 was a fake encounter. The High Court thereafter proposed for an investigation under Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC). On behalf of the victims, I had opposed the appointment of CBI as we had lost complete faith in the way Central Government was appointing clearly saffronised officers. We wanted the original SIT to continue but the accused police officer and Gujarat Government demanded CBI to conduct the investigation. The High Court however appointed the CBI plus allowed the CBI to take assistance from IGP Satish Verma. The Order of the Div. Bench dated 1st December, 2011:
Mr.Sinha, learned Counsel on behalf of the original petitioners have prayed that when SIT is already constituted, this Court may continue the investigation of another/fresh FIR also with the SIT. They have contended that though it was earlier prayed by the petitioners for the investigation through CBI, now they are not desirous to see that the investigation of another FIR be made by CBI. Therefore, they submit that the same SIT be continued.
GL Singhal, Tarun Barot and 12 other accused police personnel filed an application before the High Court of Gujarat stating that they actually want the Central Bureau of Investigation to investigate this matter. Quoting the prayer of the applicants (police personnel) from CR-MA/5853/2011.
The applicants by way of the present application are also seeking transfer of the further investigation of FIR being 1st C.R. No. 8/04 to the Central Bureau of Investigation or a newly constituted SIT comprising of Senior Cadre IPS Officers not associated/posted with the State of Gujarat.
Additionally, the Advocate General of the State, Mr Kamal Trivedi, who represents the state, had also stated before the Gujarat High Court that if the Court wishes to handover the investigation to an agency besides the state itself, then there preference would be CBI/NIA. Quoting from CR-MA/15981/2010:
Whereas the learned Advocate General appearing for the State submitted that the first choice on the part of the State is the investigation of another/fresh FIR through the State Agency. he has submitted that if this Court finds it proper to give the investigation to an agency other than that of the State, then in his submission, it may be given to NIA or CBI.
The above sequence of events would indicate the BJP conspiracy in getting CBI to investigate the Ishrat case as they were confident that the they would be able to control the caged parrot and all they had to do was to saffronise one parrot. The only impediment was the association of IGP Satish Verma with CBI. Ranjit Sinha removed him on 3rd July, 2013. CBI filed their first charge-sheet on 3rd July, after having gotten rid of Satish Verma. Ranjit Sinha thus achieved his goal of sidelining the main investigator in this case.
We shall however neither oblige you Mr Ranjit Sinha or Amit Shah. The whole nation will be told about this great failure of the justice system and if the democrats don’t rise at this stage, we shall have a criminal as our Prime Minister. Remove Ranjit Sinha immediately and re-open the Ishrat investigation with Satish Verma Chairing the SIT.